There is no FANG without Facebook Inc., but the social media company on Wednesday will complete the reporting season for the four fast-charging technology companies represented in the popular acronym.
The pressure is on. Amazon.com Inc. and Google Inc. blew past expectations with their quarterly results last week, sending their respective share prices to new highs. Netflix Inc. missed profit expectations but reported surprisingly strong subscriber growth.
Analysts predict Facebook will report a profit of $1.28 (U.S.) a share, or $1.66 after adjustments, up from 82 cents a share last year. But keep in mind that Facebook has an extensive track record of beating expectations: Over the 21 quarters it has reported financial results as a public company, Facebook has beaten expectations 20 times.
Meanwhile, political junkies may want to listen closely to what the company says about last year's U.S. presidential election. According to The New York Times, Russian agents reached 126 million Facebook users during the election, with posts designed to sway results.
And speaking of the Times, the Gray Lady will report its results on Wednesday, and politics may also be a hot topic of discussion.
The share price has surged 77 per cent over the past year, no doubt as its subscriber base grows in response to the Trump administration. Analysts are expecting a profit of 8 cents a share, up from zero last year. However, the Times has a history of beating expectations, with profits exceeding analysts' estimates for the past 12 quarters.
In Canada, Trican Well Service Ltd. will report its results. The oil and gas services company has been struggling with lower crude oil prices in recent years, and its share price is down since 2014.
But with the price of crude oil firmly above $50 (U.S.) a barrel, up 28 per cent since June, some of these beaten-up names in Canada's energy sector are bound to attract renewed attention.
Analysts expect Trican will report a profit of 7.4 cents (Canadian ) a share, or 9.3 cents after adjustments, swinging from a loss of about 12 cents a share last year.
Also look for results from Torstar Corp., publisher of the Toronto Star. The company, which has been struggling along with the rest of the Canadian newspaper industry with shares down 27 per cent this year, is expected to report a loss of 4.3 cents a share, compared with a profit of 4.6 cents a share last year.
Results tend to be considerably higher or lower than expectations though. Last quarter, the quarterly loss was nearly 70-per-cent worse than analysts' estimates – so expect the unexpected.
After markets closed on Tuesday, Electronic Arts Inc. beat expectations with an adjusted profit of 62.1 cents (U.S.) a share, up from 52.6 cents last year.
Analysts had been expecting a profit of 54.2 cents a share. However, shares slipped in post-market trading.
United States Steel Corp. was expected Tuesday night to report a profit of 70.2 cents a share, up from 40 cents a share last year.